Contingency Cases Considered


Very few law firms will share your risk and handle business litigation on a contingency.  Even fewer will do it well.  Instead, most law firms will charge you an hourly rate, which you will pay whether the case is won or lost. For many companies and business people, this hourly model is not cost-effective and may prevent you from pursuing an otherwise good case.

Although not all cases can be handled on a contingency basis, the Zohar Law Firm has a particular expertise in identifying those that can– and then achieving stellar results. Our clients are then freed to dedicate the money and resources they otherwise would have spent on legal fees and use them towards growing their business.

There is no set formula for identifying the right business case to handle on a contingency, and we consider many factors during our review. Such factors include:

  • There must be a sufficient amount at stake in order to balance against the risks. Most cases we take involve at least $500,000 or more, although occasionally we will consider a case involving less.
  • The defendant must be able to pay a judgment. Situations that do not lend themselves to a contingency arrangement include a potential defendant that owes money but has declared bankruptcy or is near bankruptcy, is in substantial debt, or is a relatively new or small company with little or no assets or profits.
  • If a case is extremely complex (ie. involving multiple parties, numerous depositions, the need for many experts, requires significant travel, or must be filed in other jurisdictions), it may be less appropriate to be handled on a contingency. However, if the amounts at stake are large enough, we may be willing to assume the additional risk.
  • If there are claims or potential claims against you, that will likely prevent us from being able to handle your matter on a contingency.

Please keep in mind that because of our unique approach to handling business disputes, we receive hundreds of inquiries each year. Out of those inquiries, we accept only a handful of new cases.

We must thoroughly analyze each potential matter before we can determine whether it’s a case that we feel is appropriate for our firm to handle. Oftentimes, we must ask many questions of the potential client and seek many documents needed to substantiate the potential claim. This process takes time—sometimes weeks, and on rare occasions, months. As John Wooden once said, “Failure to prepare is preparing to fail.” We pride ourselves on being thorough with each potential matter and hope you understand why.

We give review priority to potential matters that have come to us earlier. If for some reason you believe your potential case involves something of an urgent nature, please let us know and explain why. If possible, we will then try to expedite our review. However, we cannot guarantee that any review will be completed by a certain date, so please do not rely on us if that is your particular need at this time.

Lastly, until we agree to take a case and receive a signed retainer agreement, we do not represent you as your attorney.

Our review is preliminary only, does not mean that we will necessarily take your case, and is not meant to give you advice about your case or about what you should do in general to protect your rights.